The Power of Letting Go
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about letting go: about how easy it is to say and how hard it is to actually do.
It’s hard to let go. To let go of things. To let go of attachments. To let go of beliefs that no longer serve you. To let go of old stories. To let go of people. To let go of the way things were. And it’s especially hard to let go of children.
It’s ironic to me that parenting asks you to be all in all the time. To give love unconditionally. To be totally present and then it tells you — or makes you — let go. Just like that; you are asked to let go. It’s the cycle — or circle — of life. You give your all and if you do your children are supposed to feel loved, secure and independent. Independent enough to go off and live their own lives. And you the parent are supposed to be totally fine with that. You are supposed to wave goodbye with a big smile on your face and feel like you did good.
Letting go is tough for me. I’m doing it, but I admit I don’t like it. No, I don’t like it at all. That’s my honest feeling and truth. I went to Bed Bath & Beyond again this week (I have now have four dorm rooms and three apartments under my belt). I’ve been there so many times the manager greeted me cheerfully with jokes of, “Is this it? Is this the last time? The last one?” I smiled as my eyes welled up with tears. My daughter rolled her eyes and told me to “Relax” (FYI I hate being told to relax). She told me, “Just be happy.” She reminds me daily that this isn’t about me, it’s about letting my kids do their own thing. It is, she says, the way it’s supposed to be.
But I don’t like things the way they are supposed to be. No Architect Of Change does. We challenge what is and imagine what can be. But we also have the courage to move forward.
So as I watched my youngest child graduate from high school and walk across the stage out into adulthood, I admit I knew the time had come for me to let go. I knew I had no choice but to do so.
‘Let go Maria,’ I said to myself. ‘Let go.’
I know I can and will do it. I have faith. Faith in myself and in my kids. I know this new era of life is going to be more unscripted. More wide open. That’s both scary and exhilarating. The days will no longer revolve around school schedules. The days will become mine to imagine, mine to create.
That also means no more hiding, no more saying ‘I can’t go here,’ ‘I can’t do this,’ because of my kids. I’m free now. Omg.
So as Christopher heads off to college I know in my heart I can step back because I know he’s got it!! And I know in my heart I do as well.
Let go…Let’s go!
P.S.: I know I’m talking about letting go. This is Phase One. The big “Let Go” with a capital LG will be when I drop Christopher off at college and come home. Brace yourself.
NEWS AND VIEWS ABOVE THE NOISE
NEWS TO OPEN YOUR HEART
I’ve always believed in the power of one and in the unity of our great country. That’s why I love this One America Appeal campaign – which is a joint appeal by all five living former American Presidents to encourage their fellow citizens to support hurricane recovery. It’s a reminder that we need to drop our party lines, our state lines, our judgments, and work together as One America. Yes, we are.
VIEWS FOR YOUR DINNER TABLE CONVERSATION
In addition to the hurricanes, there was other major news this week. With President Trump announcing his plans to rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, millions of these lives now hang in the balance as well. Many think they know who these people are, but I’ve had several conversations this week and realized there’s a real lack of understanding. The NY Times did a nice job putting together this interactive portrait featuring the life stories of 100+ of these individuals. I think it’s worth us all taking a moment to read them and try to better understand.
NEWS FOR YOUR MIND
God willing, we’re all going to be here for awhile. So, if you’re thinking about how to age well, then you’re going to want to watch this TODAY piece I did this week about a reported “longevity pill.” It’s about a common medication that one doctor hopes could be the key to eliminating certain age-related diseases and leading to a longer life.
NEWS TO MAKE YOU THINK
One thing is for sure: we’ll be hearing a lot next week about what Hillary Clinton has been thinking when she releases her new post-election memoir “What Happened.” So many people have weighed in with their opinions on this past election. Now, we get to hear from her directly. Excerpts released so far have certainly been food for thought, including her jabs at Bernie Sanders, who she criticizes for causing “lasting damage” to the Democratic Party. I know I’ll be curious to hear more.
ARCHITECTS OF CHANGE OF THE WEEK:
This week, we shine our Architects of Change of the Week spotlight on all of the first responders who are serving in Houston, Florida, the Caribbean and elsewhere right now. Some have gotten attention in the news, but so many have been unsung heroes doing incredible work to rescue our fellow citizens and get their families to safety. Many are quickly pivoting from Houston and now headed to Florida. Thank you for all that you are doing. May we all find a way to support your efforts during this time.
Monday marks the 16th anniversary of September 11, a day that is forever stamped in so many of our minds. Today, we share with you a video of Architect of Change Billy Collins, who served as U.S. Poet Laureate in 2001 and wrote a beautiful poem remembering those who had fallen. May we remember today, and may we look ahead to how we can continue to come together as a country.
INSPIRATION FOR THE WEEK AHEAD
SHOP FOR YOUR MIND
“My First Coloring Book Is On Sale Now!”
I’m so excited that Color Your Mind” is now a national bestseller! If you know someone with Alzheimer’s or another brain-related challenge, or if you know someone who is a caregiver, I hope you’ll consider gifting them with a copy. It’s designed with love.
“We Want to Make Our Kids Proud. We Want to Give Back.”
The women of Rivet Revolution have also been touched by Alzheimer’s. Through their passion for jewelry-making, they are using their work to ignite conversations and raise awareness. These “WAM Revolution Bands” benefit women-based research.